Dragonfly Eyes

IMG_5873-EditIt starts with a movement you catch out of the corner of your eye. A flutter of wings, a humming buzz as it flies past your ear. It’s a dragon! Adrenaline pumps and your mouth moves into a smile. Insects that have been on earth for millennia, still here today, flying past your head, in your village, allowing you to be part of their lives. Even better it doesn’t just end with a brief glance – the dragon alights. For some reason, that particular twig or stalk is just the spot to watch out for other dragons on this patch. You creep closer, holding your breath, and squeeze the shutter, click, click, click, as you tip-toe in. You are lucky this time, the dragon stays. It turns its head, observes you. You see its complex compound eyes, the little bristles on its chin, the delicate wings. Each little hair on its thorax and legs. The colours running through its body. Click, click, click, focus on its eyes, don’t breathe, stay still, keep the focus sharp. You’re so hot in the summer sunshine but you just push past it, click, click, click, until hit decides “that’s enough” and takes off again to patrol the pond. Your breath comes out in a run, mad grin on your face, as you let go of the tension of holding steady. Leaning on the fence post you tell the dragon “thank you” as you turn to make your way home. Later, you relive the moment as you look through the photos you took. They’re not all in focus, but there are one or two that draw a gasp of wonder and awe. “Look at the eyes!”. The awe fills you at the detail of its eyes magnified on the screen, the detail of its features, the light on its face. Things don’t have to be big to be awe-inspiring!

By Suzy Shipman

I like to take photos and write words ...

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